Preparing for a new baby can be stressful. Along with all the logistical planning you must complete to prepare for your new addition, you must also navigate the complex world of health insurance and coverage options.
Access to a breast pump is something that many new parents don't think about until the pump is needed. You may be able to obtain a free breast pump through your insurance provider, but only if you know how to navigate the health insurance system properly.
1. Insurance Plans Set Allowable Amounts
Most insurance providers give new parents access to a breast pump for free, however you must recognize that not all pumps may be free.
Your insurance policy probably lists an allowable amount that the provider is willing to pay for specific medical supplies. This allowable amount is what the insurance company recognizes as a complete payment for that device.
Your allowable amount may be high enough to cover most breast pumps, but you will want to verify the allowable amount before you start shopping for a breast pump to help with caring for your new baby.
2. Primary and Secondary Coverage May Apply
Many families have multiple insurance policies at the time of their child's birth. A primary insurance policy is typically tied directly to your employer, while a secondary policy is usually through a spouse's employer.
You will have to bill your primary insurance provider for your breast pump, but you may be able to receive additional coverage through a secondary provider.
Check both policies to see which types of medical equipment are covered. If both provide coverage for breast pumps, you will be able to bill your secondary insurance for breast pump costs that go above your primary provider's allowable amount.
Having both primary and secondary coverage could give you access to high-end breast pumps at little or no cost to you.
3. Restrictions May Apply
You should carefully read through your health insurance policy before selecting a breast pump. This allows you to identify any potential restrictions that might apply to your insurance provider's coverage of a breast pump.
Some providers will only cover manual breast pumps or single-electric pumps. Other insurance providers may not reimburse you for the purchase of your own breast pump, but they will cover the cost of renting a pump while you are breastfeeding.
If you understand your policy's restrictions, you will be better equipped to select a breast pump that will require no out-of-pocket payment.